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here in northern virginia, and i want to acknowledge them. first of all, congressman jim moran, who's been doing great work for a very long time. [ applause ] congressman gerry connolly has been doing terrific work here locally and now on capitol hill. we've got sharon bulova, who is the chairwoman of the fairfax county board of commissioners. [ applause ] we've also got a couple of small business owners, because one of the things i want to talk about is how we can grow the economy and get people back to work, and so who better to hear from than a couple of small business owners. don't worry, i'm not going to call on you, but i'm just glad you're here. first of all, we've got cherrelle hurt, who is the owner of as we grow learning center. hey, cherrelle. thanks for being here. [ applause ] and larry poltavtsev -- did i say that right, larry? -- who is the c.e.o. of target labs, inc. and so we're glad that you guys could join us. now, i'm only going to say a few things at the top. i want to talk a little bit about why i decided to run for president in the first place, back in 2007-20
of that death of senator byrd in virginia, regarded as a giant in american history. he served our government for nearly a quarter of its history. a daunting task, one that pales in comparison to the challenges which you see. i'm pleased to have the opportunity to visit would briefly here today. it allows me -- back in july, when the announcement was made, amidst the dozens of calls of congratulations and well wishes, at the chance to have a conversation with a friend and former colleague by the name of robert ferguson, a marine currently serving as the cabinet secretary for the west virginia department of administration, a man who is extremely active in veterans' issues throughout the state of west virginia. during our brief conversation, he sent me a simple figured, 32. the marines they had died in that calendar year. it is more troubling given the high numbers of the best ever used. talk to me about the men -- the mental and behavioral challenges facing the men and women in your command as they return from defending our country in places like iraq and afghanistan, and also the distress --
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